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2008 Audi A4 2.0T convertible Car has been to body shop to repair the bumper as it pulled off during parking incident. After I got car repaired this Check Engine Light came. P2181: Coolant System Performance. I don't know much about car and tiered of Audi car repair cost, so please help. These are my observations:

  1. Car coolant gauge gradually reaches mid way and stops there, no issue.
  2. But I smell engine(something) burning smell after I drive for 30mins and also I can feel engine hotness near hood as my be overheated?
  3. At start some pleasant oil burning smell comes.
  4. Car has oil leak for long, so many times mechanics repaired but never fixed!
  5. Oil changes comes very often(like 3 months, less than mentioned time and miles) and did oil change every time.
  6. I think car is drinking too much gas! With full tank Premium gas (91) I get to run only 150-170 miles on highways! (is it normal?)
  7. By any chance, body shop repair people done something wrong?

Please advice me what are the things need to be done to fix car completely so that it will run in good condition. It will be helpful if you can explain me every point I mentioned and give me more information on each.

  • Welcome to Motor Vehicle & Repair! If the gauge isn't going past halfway, then it's unlikely that you're really having any dangerous problems, but not guaranteed. Do you have coolant missing often? Or do you frequently have to refill the coolant? In theory, that code could be thrown if the wrong coolant was used, or if the system is detecting a lack of pressure (like a leaky radiator cap), although I don't know if that vehicle has sensors for those points. – kyle_engineer Nov 17 '17 at 23:34
  • I think the p2181 code is similar to a p0128 code. It uses engine run time and ect temp vs a set value. I could find very little information on this in Mitchell. It could be low coolant/a leak or a thermostat starting to go bad. What kind of fuel trims are you seeing? very lean? how's the engine oil? does it smell like gas? For your oil leak you need to take it to a garage that specializes in Audis it's very easy to destroy the engine if you don't know what you're doing e.g. the intake cam caps are part of the valve cover. – Ben Nov 18 '17 at 0:24
  • The coolant wont pass half way at all. It starts with 0 ot "C" and gradually goes up. Takes like 5 mins or so to reach midway and stays there until the engine cools off. Coolant isn't missing. I don't suspect ant coolant leak. I don't see any leak near radiator cap. Coollant level is ore than min level but below max level. Mechanics recently filled coolant. – ews Nov 18 '17 at 16:49

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